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rapped for withholding judgment reasons bedroom
Dumisani Sibanda, NewsDay
September 06, 2013
Failure by the
Constitutional Court (ConCourt) to give reasons for its dismissal
of a case where parties in the outgoing inclusive
government were seeking postponement of the July
31 elections had created unnecessary anxiety, a local legal
agency has said.
Veritas, an organisation
that provides information and interprets parliamentary proceedings
and national laws, issued a statement on Monday, saying it was imperative
that the ConCourt disclosed the reasons for its ruling issued two
The application in question
was jointly filed by outgoing Justice minister Patrick Chinamasa,
MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai, MDC president Welshman Ncube and
a civic society activist Nixon Nyikadzino following recommendations
by Sadc leaders who had indicated the July 31 date set for the polls
was too early before implementation of stated reforms.
This was after
President Robert Mugabe’s proclamation
of July 31 as the date for elections.
“The absence, two
months on, of the Constitutional Court’s reasons for judgment
explaining its 4th July decisions is a cause for concern,”
It said the public was
entitled to know why the court reached its unanimous decision on
such an important issue.
“Even a short summary
of the thinking underlying the court’s conclusion, to be elaborated
in a full judgment later, would have been helpful,” the agency
Veritas added: “The
reasons for judgment serves an important function in maintaining
the rule of law, by demonstrating the independence, impartiality
and accountability of the courts, maintaining public confidence
in the administration of justice, and preventing undesirable speculation
as to judicial impartiality.
“A formal court
order, not accompanied by or at least promptly followed up by detailed
reasons for judgment, will tend to increase undesirable public suspicion
and dissatisfaction, and prompt accusations of arbitrary use of
the judicial power, no matter how unjustified suspicion, dissatisfaction
and accusation may be in fact.”
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